Now, I'm not sure if the Cleveland Browns stadium even has a 'B' Deck, but here's the 'B' Deck report none-the-less. I do know that I had fantastic seats, just behind the bar, 5 feet from a gigantic flat-screen.
Ohio State played a virtual home game in Cleveland Saturday as they pasted the Toledo Rockets 38-0. Terrelle Pryor ran for 110 yards and threw for another 262. Pryor had 4 touchdowns(3 pass 1 rush) on day. Toledo product Dane Sanzenbacher gave his former hometown team nightmares as the sophmore hauled in a 76 yard bomb from Pyror to open the scoring. Sanzenbacher finished with 7 grabs for 126 yards(career high). Devier Posey had 5 catches and Saine, Carter, and Small had 2 each.
Toledo had rolled up 85 points and 1100 yards in their two previous games(purdue/colorado), but was held to just 210 yards(13 rushing) on Saturday. It appeared as if Toledo had finally scored to start the fourth quarter after Aaron Opelt hooked up with Erik Page for a 30 yard strike. Just as Page was about to cross the goalline, he was stripped by Kurt Coleman who, for the second time this season, violently pulled the ball away from a defender. The Buckeye's recovered for a touchback.
J.B Shugarts started at right tackle as Jim Cordle is sidelined for 3-4 weeks with an ankle injury. He was not the only new face on the offensive line as Mike Adams saw his first significant time of 2009. Adams spelled LT Andy Miller early and often, and both young sophmore's (adams/shugarts) looked impressive. Shugarts was called for 3 false starts though- I guess Tressel wasn't kidding when he said the kid really fires off the ball. It was the first time all season that Buckeye fans had a good look at the 'other' members of the OL recruiting class known as 'Block-O'. The third and final member,Mike Brewster, has started since game 3, 2008. Adams was dominant at times, leaving most fans to wonder if his sidelining was nothing more than a team violation. Expect to see Adams and Shugarts apply lot's of pressure on the two upperclassmen(cordle/miller), as there will be a dogfight to see who starts at those spots the remainder of the 2009 season. Adam's showed his unbelievable combination of size and agility on Pryor's second interception as he flew downfield like a WR and nearly killed(literally) the DB who had intercepted the pass. That guy got down faster than a teller in a bank heist. I have never seen a 6'7" 315 pounder move like that. WOW! They weren't the only new faces drawing a lot of attention on Saturday.
Former Jeannette, Pennsylvania Terrelle Pryor teammate and RB Jordan Hall saw his first snaps of the season, and looked very impressive. He ran for 44 yards on 7 carries(6.3). Brandon Saine was also effective, going for 45 yards on 9 attempts(5). Herron finished with 42, and the Buckeyes finished with 247 on the ground.
On defense, John Simon saw lot's of action at DT and proved that he, along with Todd Denlinger, could be the primary back-ups on the interior DL. Brian Rolle led the team in tackles for the second week in a row, and Cameron Heyward and Nathan Williams had sacks. Andrew Sweat had a late interception.
The biggest story of the weekend, just ahead of Mike Adams and J.B. Shugarts' OL play, was the performance of Terrelle Pryor. A re-juvenated Pryor took the Rockets for an orbit around the moon, shredding the defense with his arm, and his feet. Pryor's two interceptions were fixable mental errors as he threw the ball while being held. Anyone who watched the game on Saturday had to walk away with the feeling,"finally, Pryor starts to run with the ball". His delivery looked better than it has since his arrival, as Pryor showed confidence, and transferred the weight to his front foot while he threw with conviction. Despite a crater-like Rocket defense, Pryor's' performance should inspire confidence in both his teammates and the fans going into conference play.
The team is back in Columbus preparing for the BigTen opener at home against Illinois.
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